Energetic, fresh and fun, Anna Shubina is a natural storyteller whose shining light is as bright as day that you simply cannot miss! Anna first came to the Broadway Neighbourhood Centre as a youth attending Just TV's After School Leaders program. Her work ethic and vibrant personality was definitely a reason for opportunities to come her way. In a matter of a year she went from participant to staff! Read more of her story below:
1. Who are you? Introduce yourself.
Heyyy, everyone!!! My name is Anna Shubina, and I’m a filmmaker from Ukraine. I find my passion in experimental or “artsy” filmmaking, which involves symbolic meanings and a strong emotional subcontext. I enjoy combining different artistic mediums (art, music, dance, writing etc.) in one and then try improvising with that. My inspiration and ideas come to me from anything and anyone, and this is why I do not always have a well-prepared script for every project I intend to do. “Just improvise and deal with it,” I say to myself.
2. How did you get involved with Just TV? What did you do at Just TV?
A few months before graduating high school, I was searching for a place where I can find more guidance in filmmaking: any youth programs or schools? Plus, at that time, the pandemic hit our province for the first time, so I wasn’t sure if I find anything at all. But fortunately, Google showed me the After School Leaders program at Just Tv, and I immediately signed up. In three months, I learned so many new aspects about filmmaking and got to create my first music video and short film, which later was featured on CBC.
After the final showcase, I realized that I wanted to be involved with Just Tv even more, and so I was asking about any possible opportunities. To my luck, I was offered to become a video production apprentice. I was enormously grateful for that! I had a chance to be on real production sets with Just Tv mentors, set up professional cameras for the first time, edit projects in editing software such as Final Cut Pro, and collaborate and mentor other talented young filmmakers and artists. It was an unbelievable experience for me once I even cried just a little ahaha. After being at Just Tv for a year, I noticed how much I had grown as a filmmaker. Check out my Youtube Channel to see some of my Just Tv projects.
Shine by Anna Shubina
3. What do you do know?
It’s now September, and this means a new school year is about to begin. I’ll be starting my second year of the Media Studies program at the University of British Columbia. I’m extremely excited about it as my classes are finally going to be in person. But while I’m waiting for my first classes, I also have got some work to do. Recently I premiered my new short film “Under the Shadow,” which I submitted to multiple film festivals. Please find me on Instagram @realshubina if you would like to know the results first. In addition, I have been working as a freelance video editor for a while now. It’s a pretty insightful experience for me because this is my first time learning how to communicate with clients and deliver products for them. In my free time, I love getting inspiration by binge-watching thousands of music videos & movies, listening to different genres of music, and reading books.
4. What is your latest project right now?
“Under the Shadow” – a tender look into the importance of identity
This short film is created during my last months at Just Tv. The idea came across to me randomly, as everything in my artistic choices. For some time, I had been really interested in how shadows and their movements look on camera. I even made one music video in a shadowy atmosphere. I wanted to create another project in a similar style but an idea wasn't coming to me. Then one day (one year later), I was listening to one song by a Russian Youtuber, translated as “All Mine,” the lyrics of which eventually became a base for the new short film:
It’s hard to walk alone by yourself in the dark…
Don’t listen to anyone around you. Let’s break this vicious circle.
At the upcoming Just Tv program day, I told the mentors my ideas and began to start working on the film. And this is how “Under the Shadow” was born. Its interpretation I leave up to viewers.
5. What's next for you?
For now, I plan to build a strong portfolio with as many short films and music videos and participate in various film festivals. Gain as much knowledge and skills in filmmaking before my graduation, so I can be ready to pursue it full time afterwards. And of course, one of the major goals is to make a lot of partnerships with local creators.
6. Any inspirational messages to young newcomers who are also creatives trying to pursue the art scene in Canada?
After moving to Canada, I was afraid of what life has prepared for me here. A new chapter that I wasn’t ready for. New language, new school, new environment… But what I didn’t realize at that time is that I had to embrace this experience, go through it, and enjoy its ups and downs. Everything happens for a reason. We are still so young, don’t rush to figure out your life purpose right at this moment. I believe that living life is our life purpose. Have fun and try as many new things as you can!
Although, filmmaking is what can make me super happy and frustrated at the same time. One day I’ll be excited, while another day, I’ll be comparing myself to other creators. My mom once told me that there’s always someone better than me, or I will be better than someone - it’s totally okay and normal. Art is such a subjective thing; there’s no right or wrong way to answer it. Artists are not like athletes. We cannot win gold – a quote from Instagram hehehe.
Enjoy the moment,
Be proud of yourself and what you've achieved so far.
Protect your mental health at any cost.
And carry a notebook or a phone everywhere you go, because once an idea comes to you - it’s easy to forget it if it’s not written down.
Anna now resides in beautiful British Columbia with her family, pursuing her dreams of becoming a filmmaker! We miss her so dearly but we will always be cheering for her from Winnipeg and wish her nothing but the best.
To all the young artists out there who are feeling doubts, take Anna's advice! Take your time, live in the moment and just have fun. Like Just TV staff Addison always says "replace I can't with I'll try".